Recipe: Chicken katsu curry

2-4 ppl

6 x Mini cucumbers
2 tsp salt 
2/3 cup rice vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp soy sauce 
1 tsp sesame oil 
2 mini Calabrian pickled peppers

1 cup sushi rice or short grain
2 cup water 

2 x chicken breasts (butterflied + pounded until 1” thickness) 
2 cup panko bread crumbs
2 eggs
1/2 cup flour

1 yellow onion
3 carrots 
840 ml water 
1c curry flakes (My favourite brand // S&B Dinner Curry Mix in Flakes)

1. Start with your cucumbers, they will need some time to sit in the salt. Slice all your cucumbers and spicy peppers into coins, on your trusty Matheson cutting board, about 1-2mm thickness, and throw them all into a small ziplock bag with your salt, make sure to cover completely. Now whisk rice vinegar, white sugar, soy sauce, and sesame oil together in a bowl until sugar is dissolved; once your cucumbers have sat for 30 mins-1hr, pour mixture over cucumbers. Marinate for 30 minutes, then garnish with sesame seeds. This could also be done the night before and just left in your fridge. 

2. While you wait, cook your rice. Make sure that it is washed well and the water runs clear after draining repeatedly. You can use a rice cooker or pot, the results should be the same.

3. As the rice cooks through, you can start to prep your curry. Normally I would add potatoes but for this one, I just used carrots and onion. Dice your carrots and onions as small as you can, turn on your burner to medium, add a little oil to your sauce pot and start to cook through. Once it is cooked thoroughly, add your water, bring to a boil then add your curry mix, stirring constantly so nothing sticks to the bottom of the pot. It should thicken up to a puree consistency, but if it’s too thick, just add more water, little by little, to thin out, or if it’s the opposite, just add another tablespoon of the curry mix and see if it gets there. You really can’t mess it up. Once you have achieved the right thickness, take it off the heat and leave to the side.

4. Grab your Matheson cast iron. Fill it half way with canola or veg oil, turn the heat to medium-high and allow for the oil to come up to temp.

5. Setup your breading station, in separate vessels, lay out your flour, beaten eggs and panko. Take your pounded chicken breasts and dredge, flour (shake off access but make sure it is covered), then egg wash (shake off access but make sure it is covered), then completely cover in panko, repeat for the second one.

6. Your oil should be hot enough to fry now, so take each chicken katsu and carefully place on oil to shallow fry, make sure to flip after 2-3 mins. Grab a resting rack to let your cutlets drain any excess oil, then repeat for the second and season with salt and pepper on both sides.

7. Grab a shallow bowl or dinner plate, scoop a cup of rice, pour a couple ladles of curry (you might need to heat it up a touch but it usually holds it’s heat pretty well) on the rice and let it pool around the whole dish. Slice your katsu into thin strips and place on top of your curry soaked rice. Then garnish with the quick pickle, or for some extra crunch, I like to blanch snow peas quickly and thinly slice to add with the cucumbers.